A Mass. firefighter chickened out from doing the right thing to address a brood of noisy cluckers keeping him up at night. The 66-year-old firefighter is now under fire and feeling the heat after video surfaced of the madcap flame battler dousing his neighbor’s chickens with wasp spray and feeding them poisoned rat pellets.
Writes the CBS News Crimesider: “A suburban Boston firefighter has been arrested and placed on administrative leave amid allegations he poisoned and killed 11 of his neighbor's chickens. Police in Carlisle said Frank Sargent fed the chickens food pellets laced with rat poison between April and July in his neighbor's backyard chicken coop. He was charged with 11 counts of malicious killing of a domestic animal on July 28.”
The hens really got to this bird-brained fireman. After video was presented, Sargent, who initially lied about his actions, came clean and offered a rather outlandish explanation:
“I couldn't sleep. I couldn't take it anymore,” Sargent said. “I mixed mouse poison with bird seed and... brought it over in a bucket and just threw it in [the coop]. I know it sounds crazy, but I got to the point where I thought the bird was mocking me. So I sprayed it with hornet spray just to make it stop.”
Eleven of the chickens died – 10 hens and a rooster. Others are sick and will likely have to be put down. The chickens were owned by Brendan Mirfield and Amanda DeFreest, who live next door to the firefighter.
Records show that Sargent complained multiple times to the Carlisle town board and police department about the noise coming from the coop. The relationship between Sargent and his neighbors appeared to sour back in 2012, when the chickens were purchased. The families have been feuding ever since, even engaging each other in published letters sent to a local newspaper.
After Sargent wrote a bellyaching letter, DeFreest responded with: “We've been putting the rooster in his box every night, which has drastically decreased and muffled his crow. To say that we are being indecent and discourteous is far from fair, or the truth.”
The Lowell Sun shared:
Sargent was placed on administrative leave on July 30 by the Carlisle Fire Department, "pending the resolution of his personal issue," Fire Chief David Flannery said.
As an on-call firefighter/EMT, Sargent is only paid for those calls he responds to, making this involuntary leave the equivalent of an unpaid suspension, Flannery noted.
“I (screwed) up. I just couldn't take it anymore, and I killed the chickens,” Sargent admitted.
Investigating officer Sgt. Scott Barnes says Sargent stated to him that “he loves animals, would never hurt them, and he does not eat animals because he is a member of PETA.”
Doesn’t eat chickens, just kills them. Sounds like PETA may be revoking one of its members soon.